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Beware of an obsession with media appearances

By Jacob McKimm

An addiction to appearing in the media can throw your public relations efforts into disarray.


Jason Mudd discussing how to avoid becoming addicted to media appearances.

Everyone loves media appearances. Heck, one of the goals of public relations is to get your company in the media via positive appearances to increase awareness of your company or brand. Getting positive media appearances is never a bad thing, right? Not always.




Like any fame or attention, you can become addicted to getting it. Once that happens, it can take over your public relations plan as you focus exclusively on appearing on the latest television show, website, or news article. It turns into a typical addiction, where you eschew other things for the sake of getting that next appearance.


This can cause problems with you and your public relations. The more you want to appear in the media, the more your public relations plans as a whole suffer as everything starts becoming about appearances. Friction begins to develop between you and your PR as everything else starts going by the wayside in order to get you in another media appearance. It can even get to the point where you and your PR team part ways due to how much it’s consumed your entire PR plan.


Think that doesn’t happen? One time, we had a client that never appeared in the media before and worked with us to change that. Once he appeared in the media, he, naturally, was overjoyed. However, he wanted more appearances and would not stop despite the appearances we got for him. It got to the point where he had a seemingly never-ending desire to get media appearances. It felt like he was addicted to appearing in the media. Appearances are great, but his desire was obsessive.


One thing we found that can stop this from rearing its ugly head is to spread out media coverage among people in your company. Don’t just focus on one person, such as the spokesperson or CEO. Have the media cover other people in your company for the great accomplishments or thought leadership they provide. Spreading coverage around will make it less likely for someone to become obsessed with media coverage for him or her to the exclusion of everything else. Plus, it shows your company isn’t a one-trick pony as far as notable people go.


Media coverage is great for your company, but it can go too far. Once the obsessive desire for media appearances starts taking over your public relations plans, it can be hard to root out. Be vigilant for this problem, and focus on having multiple people in your company get media coverage to nip this issue in the bud before it can sprout and devour your public relations efforts.


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McKimm_Jacob-1.jpgClients love Jacob’s speed. Jacob is an inbound marketing-certified webmaster. He earned an integrated communications degree from Florida State College at Jacksonville. Jacob joined Axia PR as an intern in August 2015 and earned his way into a critical role at our PR agency.


Topics: media relations, earned media, news media

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